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1930's Naval Aviator Grouping - Wings , Insignia + More!


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#1 KASTAUFFER

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Posted 17 December 2007 - 08:03 PM

He is a nice little group I just acquired with some very nice 1930's vintage naval insignia.

LT Chester H. Skidmore II became a Naval Aviator in 1938 after training at Pensacola Naval Air Station. At the beginning of WWII he was a pilot with VP-83 ( Flying a PBY airplane) and crashed his plane into the sea 5 miles short of Natal Brazil during a violent storm in June 1942 . 7 of his 10 man crew perished .

His Bullion wings are definately from the 1930's as are the 1.5 inch gold Naval Aviator wings that would have been pinned to his overseas hat. The Bullion wings are 3.5 inches long and the detail is fantastic !!!!! ( Much longer than WWII bullion wings which are 2.75 - 3 inches long ) . His bullion officers cap badge is also of the pre-war variety facing the " other direction "

I also acquired his large 1938 PNAS Naval Aviator's Certificate , and his leather Naval Aviator holder for the smaller cards.

Overall this kind of insignia is very hard to find

Skid_1.JPG

#2 KASTAUFFER

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Posted 17 December 2007 - 08:05 PM

His bullion wings . Notice the reverse is also different than WWII bullion wings .

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Edited by KASTAUFFER, 17 December 2007 - 08:05 PM.


#3 KASTAUFFER

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Posted 17 December 2007 - 08:07 PM

The 1.5" gold wings for the overseas hat. They are not marked, but I suspect they are 10K Robbins wings .

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#4 KASTAUFFER

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Posted 17 December 2007 - 08:08 PM

His bullion Officers Cap device with intact mohair band.

Skid_2.JPG

#5 KASTAUFFER

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Posted 17 December 2007 - 08:10 PM

His Naval Aviator Certificate from 1938 presented to him upon graduation from flight school at Pensacola . I have only seen 3 of these dated in the 1930's on Ebay in the past 10 years . How many white tongue 101st Airborne patches have been on Ebay in the same time period :rolleyes:

Skid_7.JPG

#6 KASTAUFFER

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Posted 17 December 2007 - 08:16 PM

Lastly, the contents of his leather Naval Aviator ID book . I did not get the actual Naval Aviator "ID card " that would have been presented to him in 1938 , but the head shot photo that came with it is there. He served some time at Pearl Harbor flying catapult float planes off of the USS Oklahoma and USS West Virginia . Note that the uniform he is wearing are " Tans" with cuff braid that are very hard to find.


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Edited by KASTAUFFER, 17 December 2007 - 08:40 PM.


#7 KASTAUFFER

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Posted 17 December 2007 - 08:17 PM

Close up of his Pearl Harbor Naval Air Station ID card. It is signed by Leslie Gehres who went on to command the USS Franklin during WWII .

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Experienced Naval Aviators like Lt Skidmore helped turn the tide against the Japanese in the early dark days of WWII at such places as Midway and the Battle of the Coral Sea . We will never know what he could have accomplished with his early and untimely death in an accident.

Edited by KASTAUFFER, 17 December 2007 - 08:24 PM.


#8 Gary Cain

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Posted 17 December 2007 - 08:23 PM

Kurt,

Very nice find indeed! I agree with you on the cap wing as well. It has their look for sure. The paperwork though is really special. I love that when it comes together, simply excellent!



Gary

#9 bobgee

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Posted 17 December 2007 - 09:15 PM

Very nice little grouping, Kurt. Congrats!
Bob

#10 jjdevi1

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Posted 18 December 2007 - 03:14 AM

Kurt,

Nice group! That was on E-Bay wasn't it?

John

#11 Allan H.

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Posted 18 December 2007 - 03:20 AM

Kurt,
Don't you have anything airborne for us to look at? :rolleyes:

This is indeed a very nice and poignant grouping and I appreciate your taking the time to post it up to the forum. The quality of the bullion is indeed stunning, and the fact that this man gave his life in military service makes it all the more special. It is saddening to know that his death wouldn't result in any sort of recognition from his government.
Keep posting buddy! Some of us actually appreciate getting to see these groupings that you find.
Allan

#12 Ricardo

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Posted 18 December 2007 - 04:50 AM

Hi Kurt,

Great group!!! Thank you for sharing!!!

Best regards from Brazil,

Ricardo.

#13 Jeremiah

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Posted 18 December 2007 - 06:24 AM

Beautiful insignia Kurt! Thank you for sharing his sad story with us. I have a Marine Corps 2nd Lt's uniform that the original owner of died in a Corsair crash in California. This grouping reminds me of him, sad that neither of them got the recognition they deserved.

Jeremiah

#14 KASTAUFFER

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Posted 21 December 2007 - 02:58 PM

Thanks Guys! The daughter says she may have more, so if I get it I will update the thread.

Kurt

#15 baker502

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Posted 21 December 2007 - 05:11 PM

Kurt,
Nice score..
Paul


Beware of grouping butchers

#16 Rustykamel

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Posted 22 December 2007 - 12:10 PM

Hi, I really enjoyed seeing this grouping--thanks for sharing. Do you happen to know what kind of airplane with the float is pictured?

Jim

#17 grovb

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Posted 22 December 2007 - 12:18 PM

Kurt,
Don't you have anything airborne for us to look at? :rolleyes:

This is indeed a very nice and poignant grouping and I appreciate your taking the time to post it up to the forum. The quality of the bullion is indeed stunning, and the fact that this man gave his life in military service makes it all the more special. It is saddening to know that his death wouldn't result in any sort of recognition from his government.
Keep posting buddy! Some of us actually appreciate getting to see these groupings that you find.
Allan


I second that I really appreciate seeing your groups they are usually amazing!

#18 KASTAUFFER

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Posted 22 December 2007 - 08:42 PM

Thanks for the comments guys! I thought the plane might even be the very same plane that is in this famous photo at the lower right . The markings match . 4-O-3 . The plane in my picture is a Bi-Plane and is a Curtis SOC Seagull. I can't tell if the 1941 picture taken at Pearl Harbor is a Kingfisher or a Seagull.

014823.jpg

Edited by KASTAUFFER, 22 December 2007 - 08:57 PM.


#19 Wailuna

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Posted 22 December 2007 - 11:53 PM

...The plane in my picture is a Bi-Plane and is a Curtis SOC Seagull. I can't tell if the 1941 picture taken at Pearl Harbor is a Kingfisher or a Seagull....

It is a Kingfisher. Here is text from Dictionary of American Naval Fighting Ships that describes the scene of your picture:

"On Sunday, 7 December 1941, West Virginia lay moored outboard of Tennessee (BB-43) at berth F-6 with 40 feet of water beneath her keel. Shortly before 0800, Japanese planes, flying from a six-carrier task force, commenced their well-planned attack on the Fleet at Pearl Harbor. West Virginia took five 18-inch aircraft torpedoes in her port side and two bomb hits—those bombs being 15-inch armor-piercing shells fitted with fins...the second bomb hit further aft, wrecking one Vought OS2U Kingfisher floatplane atop the "high" catapult on Turret III and pitching the second one on her top on the main deck below. The projectile penetrated the 4-inch turret roof, wrecking one gun in the turret itself. Although the bomb proved a dud, burning gasoline from the damaged aircraft caused some damage."

And here are images of the two planes for comparison (see different configuration of pylons supporting the main center float of each plane):

kingfisher.jpg SOC_Seagull.jpg



#20 Garth Thompson

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Posted 23 December 2007 - 07:57 AM

Lastly, the contents of his leather Naval Aviator ID book . I did not get the actual Naval Aviator "ID card " that would have been presented to him in 1938 , but the head shot photo that came with it is there. He served some time at Pearl Harbor flying catapult float planes off of the USS Oklahoma and USS West Virginia . Note that the uniform he is wearing are " Tans" with cuff braid that are very hard to find.
Skid_8.JPG
Skid_9.JPG
Skid_10.JPG

Kurt,
Your statement that the tan uniform with cuff braid is hard to find is an understatement. They are impossible to find and should be considered the rarest of WW2 era US Navy uniforms. This is only the second or thirdpicture of the uniform I've ever seen.
Garth

#21 KASTAUFFER

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Posted 23 December 2007 - 04:25 PM

Kurt,
Your statement that the tan uniform with cuff braid is hard to find is an understatement. They are impossible to find and should be considered the rarest of WW2 era US Navy uniforms. This is only the second or thirdpicture of the uniform I've ever seen.
Garth


I have never found one myself or had the opportunity to buy one either. I hope the daughter finds one in the garage!

Kurt

#22 RAL

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Posted 23 December 2007 - 10:16 PM

Black mohair sleeve stripes and black buttons on the khaki blouse went away with the April 1941 change. Sleeve stripes were replaced with shoulder boards (thus requiring the removal of the shoulder strap) and buttons went from black to gold. When I asked my father about the change he said everyone simply had their stripes and shoulder straps removed and loops set for shoulder boards. Buttons were removeable anyway. Probably why you don't see too many of these.

Edited by RAL, 23 December 2007 - 10:19 PM.


#23 KASTAUFFER

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Posted 02 February 2008 - 09:23 PM

Look at what I just found on Ebay sold 1000 miles from where the other material came from :


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This is the official Presidential Memorial accolade sent to his NOK during the war . He did not receive a Purple Heart , so this was the only thing his family received .


Kurt

#24 ghost

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Posted 03 February 2008 - 04:59 AM

That really is one of the best parts about Ebay, you can find a needle in a haystack!
Way to go Kurt!

Charlie

#25 Guest_marmer_*

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Posted 05 July 2008 - 09:45 AM

Here's a picture of Admiral (then Commander) Richard Byrd with the mohair sleeve stripes.

http://i142.photobucket.com/albums/r108/marmer01/Military/RichardByrdBWtif.jpg


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